We bought the bare essentials. A poem by Maria Nikolaisen

We bought all the toilet roll
We bought all the soap
To build our kids a castle
Chockablock with fun and hope
We kept it safe, we kept it clean
With shields of soap and water
Fighting enemies unseen
To save our son and daughter

We bought all the flour and oats
We bought all the yeast
To keep our kids from starving
With a never-ending feast
We baked some bread, we baked some buns
The rest we put in storage
Who knows when this crisis ends
We had to hoard and forage

We bought all the sanitiser
We bought all there was
To disinfect our family
No germs will come near us
We shut the doors, we locked them well
To keep away the masses
Their panic is contagious
We’re just saving our own asses


Maria Nikolaisen is a writer from Bodø, Norway, who writes fiction, screenplays, lyrics and poetry in English and Norwegian. In 2019 she completed an MA in Writing at NUI Galway. Her work has been published in The Galway Review and Ropes Literary Journal.

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